Photo: Felix Carroll

Union With Mary Is Attainable for All

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EDITOR'S NOTE: The following article by Joseph A. Pelletier first appeared in the July-September 1958 issue of Marian Helpers Bulletin, now called Marian Helper.

There are many steps in devotion to Our Lady. An elementary one consists in regularly saying prayers such as the Hail Mary, the Memorare, and the Rosary. Going to Mass on Saturdays or on Mary's feast days are also in this same category.

Yet all of these things can still be isolated, external practices that do not seriously affect one's interior attitude. To change on the inside, we must augment our external practices by establishing a permanent bond with Our Lady.

Consecration to Mary is certainly an important step forward in a devotion to her, particularly if this consecration is repeated often enough with a fullness of heart.

The consecration, by its nature, implies a desire to draw closer to Mary, to assure her influence over one's entire life.

If repeated often enough — for example on rising or during morning prayers, at Mass, or Holy Communion — the consecration will create an intimate relationship between Mary and the soul. It will invariably have a powerful effect on one's spiritual life.

Another important step in this devotion consists in attempting to establish a life of close union with her. This step could be considered a sort of extension of the consecration of the soul to Mary, that is, a means of strengthening that consecration and bringing it to fruition.

Union with Mary is the immediate goal of true devotion to Our Lady, union with God being the ultimate objective. The highest degree of union with her, mystical union, is granted only to souls that have reached the summit of perfection. This is a gratuitous grace that cannot be merited by anyone, although any person can legitimately aspire to it and dispose oneself for it.

There is, however, ordinary or acquired union with the Blessed Mother. A soul, aided by ordinary grace, can readily attain through generous and concerted effort this lower form of union with her.

Union with Mary is most desirable, and all souls should be encouraged to seek it. In striving for that union, we follow the example of Jesus, who was most intimately united with His holy mother throughout His life, from the moment of His conception to His death on the cross. The union increased during the remainder of Mary's mortal life.

The saints frequently used objects such as statues and images of Our Lady as a stepping stone for contact between our soul and Mary. With deliberation and care, we select such objects and images to use in recollecting ourselves interiorly, saying some prayer or invocation that will assist us in establishing living contact with Mary.

Did you know the Marians have a Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception of the B.V.M. at the National Shrine of The Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, Mass.? You can join. Learn all about it..

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Be a part of the discussion. Add a comment now!

Web editor - Oct 15, 2010

Hi everyone.

Here's the web address for the 10 evangelical virtues:

Judie- Indiana - Oct 15, 2010

I have looked everywhere for the 10 Evangelical Virtues of our blessed Virgin Mary and I still have not found them. Thanks so much!

debbie - Oct 7, 2010

Hi Willie,
After going to the Divine Mercy web site, if you click The Marians of the Immaculate Conception, it will take you to various headings, under Mary Immaculate, at the bottom of the page, listed are the 10 Evangelical Virtues of the Blessed Virgin Mary. After reading, and praying about them. Let Our Lady lead you, she will speak to your heart as only a mother can. Praying the Rosary, and meditation on the Virtues, she will help you to be more loving, Merciful, Compassionate, Patient, Obedient, Devoted to your faith. She will enlighten you and lead you closer to her son. The Lord in his great Mercy, has given us his Mother, let her guide you.
God bless you.

Willie, Sidney,BC Canada - Oct 5, 2010

I just read the comment by debbie,RI. and I am very impressed. I would like to know the ten Evangelical Virtues of our Blessed Mother Mary. Please let me know, so I can recite them daily as well. I always pray the Rosary every day, but I would like to get closer to Her so I can get closer and love Jesus more, through her.

A servant of Jesus and Mary - Oct 5, 2010

Mary was the first disciple of Christ.

What a wonderful gift Jesus would receive if more would follow his example like his Mom did.

St. Faustina pray for us. Holy Spirit aid us on this journey, amen.

debbie Pawtucket, RI - Oct 1, 2010

being a member of the health Care Professionals for Divine Mercy, an Apostolate of the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception, I wanted to deepen my devotion to Our Lady, I could feel her pulling me along, tugging at my heart. I love my Marian family, and in deepening my devotion to Mary, I am aligning myself with my family. Looking into the Confraternity, Mary lovingly takes my hand, and walks with me, through her 10 most Evangelical Virtues. Praying the Rosary, asking for her guidance, Mary will help you to understand her virtues, and brings you to her son. Mary knows my heart, and knows what I need to do, and gently, as a mother, helps me to be more loving, and to have the patience, trust, devotion, she brings me to Jesus,and his Merciful Love. My heart was full of joy in becoming a member of the Confraternity, and my day is not completed, until I have recited the 10 Most Evangelical Virtues of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
She will be your mother. She will burst open your heart in loving devotion to her son.